Mar 9, 2011

Train delay caused by suicide attempt at Petersham

My train was delayed today because of a passenger attempting self harm at Petersham. The power lines had to be shut down for safety reasons and the announcer said there will be no trains arriving or departing from Central until further notice with the exception of platform 24 and 25 (which is the Eastern Suburbs and Illawarra line). The train to Sydenham still ran, but if I took the train there I would be stuck in Sydenham.

The staff was really nice about it, giving lots of announcements to keep everyone informed, answering all the questions of the commuters and organising things right away. I only had to wait for about half an hour, I expected a much longer delay. Congrats to the police and station staff for getting things organised so quickly. The guy didn't die (as I found out later). I heard someone say something that basically amounted to 'why couldn't he do it at a time when everyone aren't trying to get home'. That's pretty calloused.

Here's what Cityrail says:
CityRail advises that trains are being delayed within the CityRail Metropolitan Network with the exception of the Eastern Suburbs & Illawarra Line due to a person threatening self-harm at Petersham. Police have requested that the overhead power supply be suspended in that area which has now caused trains in the vicinity of Petersham to come to a stand. Extensive delays can be expected. Further information will be provided as it becomes available.
From what information I can find on the internet, the same thing happened on Monday afternoon. Quoting someone who seemed to have witnessed both incidents, "Looks like he came back with a longer conducting rod". Oh, so that why the police wanted the power lines shut down.

From another person:
"An alchol induced individual was threatening to jump from about 3:15pm. The rozzers eventually dragged him away by 4pm. Power in the section was off for about 30 minutes while they tried to get him back over the railing. With the college of knowledge knocking off at 4, every man and his dog was trapped with nowhere to escape to. 

Reports are it is the same individual from Monday."

Of the first incident on Monday, someone wrote "A problem was that some of the passengers were making things worse by giving the guy grief for delaying their trains home." Why would people say those things to someone trying to commit suicide? I don't know what made him attempt suicide twice at the same location, but I hope he'll be okay. 

More information here if you're interested.


  1. what happened about free choice. if a man wants to become a snap crackle pop. then let him be. He;'s tried twice. how many more times before we let him be?

  2. You mean...let him electrocute himself? Are you serious? Life is too precious to be wasted like that, there's always hope, there's always some way to make it better. But if we let him die, that's the end. Everything that could have been is just gone.

    I can hardly believe that living in a society like Australia, there's no one and no way to help him get through whatever hard time he's going through.

    Standing by and letting him kill himself is almost as bad as pushing him off ourselves.

  3. I can agree with with both statements you guys just said, but there is no way some random wanting to commit suicide can hold up the whole entire train network with thousands of people wanting to get home after a hot and tiring day just due to one man who should just seek help

  4. Considering he delayed every train in Sydney, affecting thousands of commuters, I can't help but think there were people whose lives were affected deeply by this. What if somebody missed saying goodbye to a dying relative? If he has done it twice within a week at the same location, that just screams of wanting the attention.

  5. They can't force him to get help. They can only give him information and people to offer help for him. The only time authority can intervene is if he threatens other people. And I assume that he might not have any family to look after him
    Also if anyone was deperate to go home, Cityrail were kind enough to leave their gates open for people to change theis mind about catching the train. They could've caught a taxi or bus

  6. I was stuck on the Town Hall Tunnel, in the stifling heat while this nut job failed yet again to commit suicide - I am going to take the most politically incorrect side here & really wished this attention seeker just got on with the job, as many people have said life is precious & too short & if this guy has such little respect for his life - then so be it - give it up! what makes his suicide attempt that much more important that those of us who needed the trains to get to places? Like somebody mentioned a passenger could have been in rush to get home to a sick loved one or other dire situations - if he has done this twice in the one week- clearly he's not serious - he's doing it to seek attention & we're all being held hostage to it!

  7. What if he did jump? How traumatised would everyone else be? The people who tried to help him but didn't succeed or the people that get splatter on by his blood. Yes he caused a inconvience to everyone but suicide is a serious situation that can affect everyone around a person

  8. Aren't there laws that require people who are psychologically dangerous to self and others to be involuntarily admitted for psychiatric help?
    The man is clearly attempting to kill himself!!

  9. Petersham station is an easy location for this kind of attempt and shows how fragile our train system is! It is sad however, if it is true, that this is this persons second attempt! We can only hope he/she gets the required medical and psychological help that they are entitled to as a member of our community. This delayed me by about 45 mins but I would rather lose 45 mins of my life rather than someone else losing their entire life! Maybe the jokers talking about frazzling should consider their value and contribution to our society?

  10. Screw political correctness. Those that think they can shelter their kids from everything on the harsh earth are mentally deranged.It was his second attempt; Bloody dramatic fairy. I could give less of a shit; If he was successful; he'd forever be remembered as the guy that screwed up all the trains for everyone. He should bloody throw himself off a building next time so he doesn't interfere with everybodys transport arrangements.

    You may think this is cold but think of this; There are hundreds of people that die in third world countries everyday. Gods gift to you is life itself; What you do with it is your gift to God. I can sympathise and say we don't know him so we shouldn't judge him; But the fact is he almost cost me my job today !

  11. That's true we don't know him so we can't judge but there are people that die everyday without choice. If he chose to throw his life away in the land of opportunity then no sympathy should bestow him.

  12. People who try to commit suicide must be in a lot of pain and or emotional turmoil to get to the stage where it is preferable to end their life than to seek help. It makes me sad and so do some of the harsh and selfish comments here.

  13. Cityrail said we should consider making alternative arrangements.

    Here are my alternative arrangements.

    1. murder him so he can't do it again, or

    2. keep him alive long enough for us to sue him in a class action law suit.

  14. putting all else aside ... (ie. harsh comments, truthful comments, major delays, being held up in peak hour,seeking help, bla bla bla..)
    I dont get why it would take the whole afternoon to get the issue solved?

    Mentally disturbed man, in need of help, prayers , medication ..whatever.. on tracks.
    Police & ambulance get called.
    Man gets shot by a tranquiliser.
    Man sleeps & gets taken into custody.
    Clear ways.
    15 mins later everyone is happy and safe.

  15. Just to re-iterate what many have already touched on here... what about all the 'what-if's that could be associated with this guys actions? What if someone was rushing to see a dying loved one, what if someone lost their job for this which in turn ruined their and their families lives? Sure these situations are all hypothetical and probably didn't happen yesterday but they could have very possibly happened to any of the thousands of people affected by the delays.

    Now I clearly don't know all the facts about this persons situation, but from my perspective it sounds like this person is more seeking attention than wanting to truly kill themselves, and this is the way they seem to want to go about it. It is a sad situation, and I truly hope they get some help, but at the end of the day it is a stupid and irresponsible act. Considering the thousands of people it affected and could possibly affect very badly, just because this person either can't get their life together or just just plain fucked in the head.

  16. If people stopped pitying & molly-coddling these attention seekers we wouldn't have to deal with them in our society. they wouldn't be inconveniencing others with their selfish deeds. Yes others will be traumatised should this person have jumped onto the tracks, but clearly since he/ she failed the first time 2 days earlier, it's not an attempt to commit suicide but to cause public nuisance. that alone is selfish on it's own & then to want to "self-harm" in a public location obviously means he wanted to be discovered & pitied. no chance in hell will he get any pity from me! He/ She is not the only person that has to deal with hardships! Life is a gift.. if u don’t want it - fine! just don’t interrupt other people’s important lives coz of your selfish deeds!

  17. We don't know him. If he was doing it just for the attention then it's easy, two words; Fuck him. If he was doing it because of a mental health problem then nobody here has the right to judge him. The process took long because cityrail shut down the majority of their electrical train lines.

  18. They should've jailed the guy up or put him in mental hospital for being a public nuisance and disturbance, the first time around. Oh, and give him counselling. the police / authorities were too careless to let it happen a second time. Life is precious, but if we can't talk the guy out of committing suicide, we should just let him be.

  19. What if the train delay actually stopped people from being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Imagine if the guy trying to commit suicide set in place a chain of events that lead to more good than bad. Maybe someone who was on that train waiting for 45 minutes would otherwise have been crossing a busy street on their way home and run over. Or maybe someone missed their flight and as a result of missing their flight got to spend more time with a loved one who they never get to see again. Or imagine if a pregnant mother was going to catch a train and found out about the delay and caught a taxi instead, narrowly avoiding be pushed over on a crowded train and suffering a miscarriage. It's called the butterfly effect. No one can know what would have happened if the train wasn't delayed.

    People who whinge about losing 45 minutes of their time need to grow up. Your not that precious and your nor that important.

  20. Maybe some day in the morning, I wake up and feel so reluctant to continue my life in the misery. I dress up and walk to Croydon Station. When the expess train to Central come, I jumped off the platform and hit against it. Everyone is late for work and I will be so happy that I become the new Australian celebrity on MX. If 1% of Sydney commuters attempt such suicide, we do not need to take trains to work. Let's take a walk to City and be GREEN!